Search

All Guns Blazing: Arsene Wenger is the man to turn Arsenal’s frsutration into progress

PUBLISHED: 14:42 06 January 2015 | UPDATED: 14:43 06 January 2015

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger during the Barclays Premier League match at Upton Park, London.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger during the Barclays Premier League match at Upton Park, London.

PA Wire/Press Association Images

In our weekly Arsenal fan column, Uche Amako looks back at 2014 as a year of mixed fortunes.

Elation. Despair. Relief. Anger. Progress. Frustration.

Those words could quite easily describe 2014 for Arsenal and you get the feeling you could say the exact same thing this time next year.

Having had our best opening half to a league season for a long while, we started full of hope and optimism and beat Cardiff 2-0 at the Emirates on New Year’s Day.

Arsenal then headed into a crucial period which would make or break our season and we faltered spectacularly at Anfield, against a very poor Man United team at home and against Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

We navigated our way through some tricky ties in the FA Cup and won at White Hart Lane, but the 6-0 thrashing at Stamford Bridge in Arsene Wenger’s 1,000th game as our manager made it feel like his long reign was coming to a depressing end.

But Arsenal recovered. Like they always seem to do. No club mixes complete disarray with huge resilience better.

We finished the season strongly, then came the FA Cup Final. Wenger’s face as he lifted the trophy will live with me forever. The years of sacrifice, criticism, abuse, but total commitment to the cause had finally been rewarded and the sense of euphoria was profound.

Five fresh faces and multiple exits followed in the summer. But the much-needed defensive reinforcement was absent and it has taken its toll.

A slow start, hampered by injuries to key individuals at various points, has left Wenger unable to field what he would call his strongest team. Too many draws, individual errors on the pitch and the bemusing decision to change formation has left Arsenal playing catch-up.

Winning a trophy after a lengthy drought should mean that 2014 is seen as progress – but that feeling has slowly ebbed away through a catalogue of issues on and off the pitch.

A growing ill-will towards Wenger has arisen, which is nasty and unwarranted. Regardless of your feeling towards him, he deserves better treatment and respect.

Because he is the man capable of turning the recent signs – albeit small ones – of progress into something tangible.

And if we can get key players fit, boost the squad with quality defensive players and regain our je ne sais quoi in attack, anything is possible in 2015.

Follow me @UcheAmako

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Islington Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Islington Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Islington Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Islington Sports News

Yesterday, 22:50

Arsenal’s U23s produced an electric display to thrash Manchester United’s U23 side on Monday night, with Konstantinos Mavropanos making a solid first appearance in red and white amongst a strong Gunners team.

A strong Arsenal U23 side eased past a young Manchester United U23 side at Meadow Park on Monday evening. Read Layth Yousif’s player ratings as new first team signing Konstantinos Mavropanos made his first start for the club with hot-shot starlet Eddie Nketiah grabbing a brace as they joined a number of players who impressed.

Yesterday, 17:25

If you supported Arsenal or had an N5 postcode in 1988, it’s almost certain you’ll remember the “Battle of Highbury”.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Arsenal scored two late goals to overcome a tough Reading side and reach the FA WSL Continental Tyres Cup final.

Read Arsene Wenger’s reaction to the defeat at Bournemouth including his take on Alexis Sanchez leaving the club.

Read our Arsenal player ratings from the Premier League match at Bournemouth on Sunday.

Bournemouth came from a goal down to beat an Arsenal side which were poor defensively.

Unsettled Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez has not travelled to Bournemouth on Sunday.

PROMOTED CONTENT

“With teenagers there’s a lot of banter, and you can really establish a relationship. You have to trust teenagers to make their own decisions.”

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read sport

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now